Der Oratorienchor Pforzheim (= OCP) were founded in 1858 in Pforzheim as men singing ensemble under the name "Männergesangverein". They began their work with 16 active singers. In 1908, when they celebrate their 50-year jubilation, there were already 62 active singers. Although for the big sacred and secular choral works woman voices were also needed, it lasted still until 1937, that the separated ensemble "Fauth'sche Frauenchor" were integrated into one working association. Since this time the choir dedicates itself exclusively to the oratorio literature. Up to the World War II the choir work did not come to succumbing. After his return from Russian war, the conductor Walter Hennig collected the survivors of the choir members, and in May 1946 the military government already approved the resumption of the choir work as "Oratorienchor des Männergesangvereins". At present the choir includes both man and women as active members.
In 1966 KMD Professor Rolf Schweizer was appointed as the conductor, and in the subsequent years he transformed the OCP into an ensemble super-regional importance. The oratorios of J.S. Bach, the big choral works of L.v. Beethoven, Johannes Brahms, Bruckner, Haydn, Schubert and Schumann, as well as Carmina Burana by Carl Orff became the repertoire of the choir. Together with the Motettenchor Pforzheim they performed War Requiem by Benjamin Britten, Franz Schmidt's oratorio Das Buch mit sieben Siegeln, Missa Profana by Heinz Werner Zimmermann and the monumental Requiem by Rolf Schweizer to the 50-year destroying of Pforzheim in World War II.
This Requiem, as well as the Requiem of Giuseppe Verdi, the Requiem of Antonin Dvorak, Felix Mendelssohn’s Lobgesang, and J.S. Bach’s Matthäus-Passion (BWV 244), have also appeared in the meantime as CD productions.